Arriva Bus Drivers May Be No-Shows on Sunday

 Arriva Bus Drivers May Be No-Shows on Company’s First Day of Service

It looks like things may get off to a rocky start for Malta’s new bus company Arriva as it’s been reported that drivers are considering not showing up for work on Sunday July 3rd, which is the first day of company operations.

According to some of Arriva’s drivers, they’re not happy with the shifts that have been scheduled to them, which get underway at seven in the morning and end at 10 at night. The unhappy drivers brought up their concerns at a meeting on June 30th that was held between Arriva and the General Workers’ Union.

However, it’s not the time of the scheduled shifts that has drivers upset. It’s the length of the shifts, which are 15 hours that they aren’t happy with. One of the drivers said that they agreed in their contract to working eight hour shifts and they don’t want to spend the majority of the day at work.

He added that the drivers are going to be paid a total of €35 a day and they won’t be properly compensated for the extra hours that they put in. In fact, a 15-hour shift is almost double the eight hours that they agreed on.

Tony Zarb, who is the general secretary of the General Workers’ Union, said that some of the drivers were quite put out by the shift schedule and that the union and Arriva are discussing the situation. However, he wouldn’t comment on whether or not the drivers were threatening the company with any industrial action over the matter.

He said that he hopes things can be worked out diplomatically and the company takes the union’s concerns to heart as they don’t want to have to take any type of action if possible. Representatives for Arriva didn’t have any comment on the issue.

Arriva is a brand new network that has 24 main lines which link major settlements in Malta and Gozo with high-frequency service. The services will cover about 23.5 million kilometres in total each year, which is an increase of 34 per cent over the current system of 17.5 million kilometres. Hopefully the Arriva buses might decrease the heavy traffic in Malta. Transport Malta designed the brand new bus-routing network and is scheduled to review it after six months in service.

1 July 2, 2011 By Stephan in News Tags: , ,

Comments (1)

  1. Pete July 4, 2011

    I think it’s obvious it will be some problems in the beginning of such a big change, but I’m sure all the maltese will complain from day 1… They could offer them a bit better wage though

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